Nikki Beach has always been more than just another hotel. Its mission to excite and entertain goes beyond traditional hospitality and the result is a loyal customer base who aren’t about to stay away when times are tough. Alexander Schneider, President of Nikki Beach Hotels & Resorts, talked to Hotelintel.co about the current situation and explained how a positive outlook, a strong brand, and a unique proposition are helping Nikki Beach to navigate safely through the worst of the pandemic.
What's the current state of affairs for Nikki Beach's business?
It is needless to say that 2020 is a very different year in comparison to what we have experienced so far. However our outlook and mindset are very positive. Between the resorts and the beach clubs we have opened most of our locations and the first reports indicate that our expectations will be exceeded. Secondly we are using this period to reflect on our mission and to remember our true roots as responsible hosts who bring the celebration of life to our extremely loyal customer base. It is stunning to see how personal the relationship to our Nikki Beach Family members has become over the past 20 years and hence their support during the current days is simply outstanding. We operate differently but the core of the mission and the product has remained the same: exciting, entertaining, responsible and unique at the same time. We believe that our brand and its execution has only become more relevant.
Nikki Beach's business includes entertainment hubs like Ibiza, St Tropez, and Monte Carlo. With flight restrictions that have come into play and continuing uncertainty over air travel, have you had to re-think your business strategy?
It is true that the airlift has become one of the biggest focal points for our industry. Having said that, we are a boutique operator with an extremely well-defined target group that has a unique return rate throughout all locations. This year has shown one more time that loyal customers are at the center of what we do. Our guests have found their way to our locations through the most amazing ways and routes in order to join us for this season. I believe that the volume driven players in our market field might feel a much stronger impact. Small is beautiful these days.
How do you think the hospitality and entertainment sector will recover?
First of all, I am convinced that the recovery will be very uneven between the different sectors as our industry has fragmented in many different sub-territories over the past years, with entirely different target groups, distribution channels, and operating styles. Secondly, I think that the messaging the hospitality sector is sending these days is not helpful. Whether it is a luxury brand or a convenience supplier, everyone relies on the unfounded notion that our clients are solely interested in seeing face masks and disinfectant. It seems that we have lost sight of our original mission to be the providers of dreams and escapes. We need to create the inspiration and motivation for our guests to make the journey and to overcome the justified initial anxiety while providing safe and responsible environments that value their trust. We can’t achieve this by showcasing the very materials that we see in our everyday Covid-19 reality.
What plans have you made? Which locations will you be focusing on?
We started already in early March to restructure some of our operational set-ups in order to prepare for a changed environment. At the same time we wanted these new impressions and routines to remain positive and to deliver an exciting experience. Hence we focused on designing journeys that are safe but fun. As most of our global portfolio is under operation today, it is hard to pick a specific destination as all of our destinations are unique and important in their very own way. However, one of our favorite areas is growth. We are currently working on several openings and projects from 2021 to 2024, which is exciting as many opportunities have arisen in the past few months as the market has realized that our approach to hotel and resort management offers a very strong blueprint for the future.